When DC Comics revealed the 14-part Harley Quinn: Black + White + Red digital-first series last week, I was excited. Then I got to read and review the first issue and knew we were lucky ducks to be reading a series like this. Each issue offers a unique perspective on Harley Quinn with creators allowed to do whatever they like. Issue #2 is available now, and it is a beautiful work that’s well worth its criminally underpriced 99 cents!
This is, simply put, super fun comics. Mirka Andolfo drops us into a day in the life of Harley Quinn and, of course, things go from crazy to completely bonkers. She quickly realizes she’s being made fun of in her own town and soon rushes to resolve the issue and show the world she can be a fashionista too. It turns out Catwoman has gained a lot of acclaim for her clothing and it’s time to top the cat. Running 19 pages, this comic provides a lot of bang for your buck.
That’s thanks to Andolfo’s ability to stuff every inch of every panel with purposeful detail, fun extras, and a visual flair you’ll be glued to. Take for instance a scene later in the book where our characters are chatting. Andolfo didn’t have to add a person in the background watching something on their phone, but it adds to the scene and makes it feel more robust and real.
The art is beautifully rendered thanks to great costumes, draping of clothing, and a chic sense of style. The main thread of this plot involves fashion and Andolfo will make you believe in the clothes on the page. There’s also a nice nod to Harley’s punk-rocker look that’ll get fans to crack a smile.
This book is also funny, which suits the self-proclaimed clown princess of crime. Check out the panel below for an example of how body language and fierce, accomplished energy can be funny as heck.
The way the pages read digitally work well, typically reading like you’re getting half a standard page. The letters by John J. Hill are good too and depending on how large your reader is displayed, it’s never hard to follow along. There are a few subtly lettered moments of emphasis that hit well and hard.
After only two issues, Harley Quinn: Black + White + Red is a huge success. It’s not only a great format for unique and creative voices, but a bargain at under a dollar. Read this for Andolfo’s incredible art, sense of humor, and above all else a charmingly over-the-top take on Harley Quinn.
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